FAR President Talks Building the Lender for Future Success

Building a reverse mortgage lender to be successful in its own business comes from a desire to be disruptive, having multiple perspectives at the leadership table, and placing people at the center of decision-making, whether they are employees or clients. These are just some of the views shared by Kristen Sieffert, president of Finance of America Reverse (FAR) in an interview with financial and lifestyle magazine Worth published last week.

The reverse mortgage industry is on the cusp of change, and making the right kinds of decisions to allow that change to assert itself will be critical to how the business will evolve in the coming years, Sieffert explained.

“The industry is ready to evolve, and disruption is on the horizon,” she said. “[T]o be ahead of what’s to come, we have to allow smart people from all corners of the industry to have opportunities to contribute, share their ideas and feel empowered to bring them forth and actualize them and recruit smart people from outside of our industry so that we can get fresh perspectives and novel thinking.”

Part of that comes with allowing multiple perspectives to offer potential paths forward from the top, instead of relying on perspectives of one type of person or role in the organization, she says. This is exemplified by having women serve in prominent leadership positions at FAR, she explains.

“At FAR, we have had several women, most of them mothers, who have earned executive-level roles,” Sieffert says. “They are smart, talented, hard-working and doing an incredible job within our business while also taking care of their families. In the mortgage industry, there are so many impressive women making real impact every day, yet we don’t see many of them rise to the C-level.”

Taking the different perspectives that can come from a more diverse leadership structure is essential in having a business built for the future, Sieffert says. That more significant level of inclusion at the top level of the company includes the different ways that women can communicate when compared with their male counterparts.

“Generally, women have different communication styles and different perspectives on what they prioritize, and it is critical that those of us in leadership roles embrace those differences and prove that they contribute to greater success and not detract from it,” Sieffert explains. “It is no mystery that there are greater forces at play, making it harder for women to rise to the top, but it can be lessened by other women and men learning what unconscious biases drive our decisions and perspectives so that we can create opportunities that were previously unavailable.”

Read the interview with Sieffert at Worth.

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